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How-to…
Cook an Egg

You think it’s such a simple thing, but a perfectly cooked egg is actually kind of an achievement, particularly when you’re trying to get a specific result. Anyone who has served their share of rubbery scrambled eggs knows that well. That said, they’re also awesome. They’re cheap, they’re packed with protein and healthy fat, and throwing one on top of pretty much anything makes pretty much anything better. Here’s a goop tutorial, along with some really important information about buying eggs, including what those labels on the cartons actually mean.

  • Boiled
    • For a soft-boiled egg with set whites and a liquid yolk set for six minutes. This is what you want for ramen, or eggs & soldiers.
    • For a perfectly hard-boiled egg with a slightly soft center set for nine minutes. This is what you want for salad niçoise.
    • For a completely cooked through yolk set for ten minutes. This is what you want for egg salad, a snack, or deviled eggs.

    Boiled

    • 1 egg
    • water
    1. Fill a small saucepan three-quarters full with water and bring to a boil.
    2. Using a spoon, gently slide in the egg and set your timer.
    3. Keep an eye on the water while the egg cooks, and try to maintain a soft boil.
      • For a soft-boiled egg with set whites and a liquid yolk set for six minutes.
      • For a perfectly hard-boiled egg with a slightly soft center set for nine minutes.
      • For a completely cooked through yolk set for ten minutes.
    4. When the timer goes off, remove the egg to an ice water bath for one minute to stop the cooking.
    5. Crack, peel, and enjoy.
  • Scrambled

    Scrambled

    • 2 eggs + 1 egg yolk
    • 1 teaspoon heavy cream
    • salt and pepper
    • 1 tablespoon butter
    1. Crack the eggs into a medium bowl and season with a very generous pinch of salt and several grinds of black pepper.
    2. Add cream, and beat the eggs with a fork until they are a uniform light yellow color.
    3. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small non-stick pan over high heat.
    4. When the butter melts and begins to foam, pour in the eggs and immediately turn to low. Stir with a spoon or spatula constantly as you cook.
    5. When the eggs are just set but still look too moist, remove them to a plate (they will continue to cook a bit as they rest).
  • Poached

    Poached

    • 1 egg
    • water
    • 2 teaspoons white vinegar
    1. Fill a small saucepan three-quarters full with water and bring to a boil, then reduce to a gentle simmer.
    2. Add vinegar to water, and crack the egg into a small bowl or ramekin.
    3. Use a wooden spoon to stir the water, creating a whirlpool, or vortex.
    4. Gently slide the cracked egg into the vortex—it should spin around a bit. Adjust the heat as needed to maintain a gentle simmer.
    5. After 10 seconds, use a slotted spoon to gently move the egg, making sure it hasn’t stuck to the bottom of the saucepan.
    6. Let the egg cook at a low simmer until it has reached desired doneness. For us, that means around 2:30 for just-set whites and completely liquid yolks, or around 3:30 for runny yolks with a little more structure.
    7. Remove to a paper towel-lined plate to drain, then either serve immediately or cool, refrigerate, and reheat in simmering water when ready to eat.
  • Fried

    Fried

    • 1 egg
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • salt and pepper
    1. Heat olive oil in a small, non-stick pan over medium heat.
    2. Crack the egg directly into the pan and season generously with salt and pepper.
    3. Continue cooking the egg over medium heat for about three minutes, or until the white is set and slightly crispy around the edges, but the yolk is still quite runny.
  • Over-Easy

    Over-Easy

    • 1 egg
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • salt and pepper

    The over-easy egg starts off exactly the same as the fried egg.

    1. Heat the olive oil in a small, non-stick pan over medium heat.
    2. Crack the egg directly into the pan and season generously with salt and pepper.
    3. Cook for about two minutes, then use a spatula to flip the egg, being careful not to break the yolk.
    4. For a runny yolk, turn off the heat and let the egg sit for one minute. If you prefer a slightly more cooked yolk, turn the heat down to low and cook one to two minutes.

Photo Credit: Carla Choy Photography

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